THETA, TN – In light of the November 13, 2014 article in ShelbyvilleNOW, “Concerned Voices – Part One” which asked questions regarding the future of the Tennessee Walking Horse, it appeared timely to print the prophetic observations of Billy Go Boy following the 2012 Celebration.
Since September 2012:
- In July 2013, U. S. District Judge upheld the USDA’s mandatory “Minimum Penalties”regulation adopted by the USDA to enforce the Horse Protection Act.
- The 2014 Celebration attendance numbers were so bad that the Celebration will not even release the attendance numbers. And have not yet paid the class winners. Rumors are abounding that the Celebration is broke.
- The American Horse Council and AVMA supports the PAST ACT.
- In the Shelbyville Times Gazette Poll, 70% of the Shelbyville residents said they were not planning on attending the 2014 Celebration.
“One of the most alarming statistics was generated by the Shelbyville Times Gazette. The poll asked local residents their plans to attend the horse show. An alarming number (71.3%, to be exact) of residents said they would not attend the show at all””not even a single night . That is astonishing.” ShelbyvilleNOW
- Still there is the defiance which parallels the Civil Rights movement of resistance to change which permeates the Big LICK psyche. The demagogues are David L. Howard, Steve Smith and Company.
FORMER TWHBEA PRESIDENT LOYD “BUSTER” BLACK APPLAUDING SORE BIG LICK “MR. HEISMAN” TO STRAINS OF “DIXIE”
BILLY GO BOY PROPHECY – SEPTEMBER 7, 2012
“Is it the economy and unrest in the business, or is it that the general public has said they are no longer going to support or patronize a sport where there is actual or perceived horse abuse?
I am afraid it is the latter.
The ones doing what you call “positive” are simply protecting their financial interests and huge egos – especially Herr and that crowd. Also, some are simply addicted to the pursuit and don’t want to give it up. It’s the hobby thing they have done all their life and they don’t know anything else to do.
Too much has happened for the big lick to be viable going forward.
You have national and state vet groups going after the pads and chains.
You have elected officials who do not want to be anywhere near a padded big lick horse.
Now, the horse IS still viable.
Tomias reported on it this summer when he covered the international event, and the number of horses showing and the participation. Those horses are selling and will sell. And the owners will advertise.
But it appears that the big lick for all practical purposes is dead.
Look at boarded up Wiser Farm and Waterfall Farm, the shuttered Sand Creek sale, the falling down C.A.Bobo Sellabration Sale – the very few colts being registered – the mares that are not being bred and the gene pool which has been dispersed.
The interesting thing is how the town of Shelbyville has pretty much walked off from the Celebration. The locals are no longer into it. Used to that town would about stop when the Celebration was going on. Now, it’s ho-hum and life as usual. This time, there were no trailers advertising contenders, no ball caps, t-shirts buttons advertising contenders – just none of the buzz around town that used to be the Celebration. Also, there was no demand for rooms – the chamber of commerce used to do a brisk business listing the locals homes to be rented – no more.
Unless the trainers are shown how to produce a horse to show that is natural and no longer has pads and chains in showing, the public is NEVER going to come back.
The trick is going to be to switch folks over to a viable horse before things get too far gone where it is going to be much more difficult to salvage.
The lawsuit is not going to be decided until December at the earliest.
I guess folks are going to hang on until then before making up their minds what to do.”
The sore Big Lick is in a downward spiral.